Monday, June 10, 2013

This is Not Better

Honestly, I can't keep up with the news.  There is the IRS scandal involving selective treatment of those applying for non profit status based on ideology. We have Animal Farm and 1984 going on at the same time.  Some charities are more equal than others.  Pro-choice good. Pro-life bad.  --cue sheep for the chorus.

We have Eric Holder shall investigate himself and I'm sure find nothing wrong.

There is the hey, we have a sequester and still no budget to speak of anywhere in sight but no matter, onward!

Gitmo remains open with no end for those imprisoned save death. Hunger strike continues and no one notices.

There is the fast and furious long forgotten.

There is the no call at 3 A.M. except to create a cover story involving a pathetic Youtube video about the killing of our ambassador and three others from Benghazi.

But all of that is old news, it's 2013 for crying out loud, those happened last year and before! Why would we worry about the past?

Okay, if we just stay in the moment: There is the seizing of phone records for the AP and other members of the press, the government investigating journalists for being journalists as a means of silencing those who do not properly show due respect to the White House spin of all things.

Or how about the epic fail of Homeland Security, the FBI and CIA to track two kids in Boston who had been radicalized and who the Russian government warned about being a threat, and the mysterious non story of the death in custody of a person of interest by the FBI? How bad a guy do you have to be to get outed by the Russian government as a baddie?

What exactly will tip off our government to action?  Does Homeland security need the villains to dress like Snidely Whiplash and have bombs with long wicks like in cartoons to recognize that if multiple alarms go off about a guy they should probably investigate?  Wasn't Homeland Security INVENTED to connect the dots between the intel of the FBI and CIA to address these sorts of scenarios?  But I digress. Again, these are old things. That happened in April. It's June.

What's new today?

Last week we learned about the massive data grab with Verizon, the latest indication that this government thinks as long it thinks there is no problem, there is no problem with recording everything said and done by everyone. Yeah we grabbed phone records and could see who you called for how long and how often but hey...we didn't listen in or anything.   Well, then everything's just hunky dory. So glad to know the government is on the job, making sure they know I call my mom almost every day.

Little noted was the fact that our government now photographs every piece of mail it processes.  Why?

IRS spends lavish amounts on line dancing and star trek videos, loses receipts.  It also pretends that the targeting of Tea parties was due to a "rogue agent." Not even a pure sycophant like the New York Times believes that line.

I forgot that the EPA also outed American Farmers in multiple states in public records when they should have been kept confidential, and that there was an imaginary employee that received awards for being an Ethical Employee, a fabrication created by a former head of the EPA who now works as a consultant for Apple.

But the steaming fresh stuff is Prism, a top-secret system at NSA to collect emails, documents, photos and materials for agents to review. Pesky judges can be so cumbersome what with their hang ups about following the law and all that, this way, there's no guess work. You know you've got a thumbs up all the way for everything, no chance of a Simon Cowell type member of the judiciary sending you home empty handed.  What does Prism mean and what can we do about it?  It means no correspondence is free of government scrutiny, so free speech is being "monitored" even if nothing is being done.

Do I sound like a tin foil hat person yet?

I've tried in recent years to get my information from multiple sources, right and left and center, and as close to original sources as possible, but if this many instances smell, from right, left and center, doesn't it mean the whole thing stinks?

Doesn't it mean there is something really wrong when a government has no process of checks and balances of power and no balancing of its check book in the process?   Doesn't anyone think a government that has unlimited authority to tax, spend, audit, spy, to use drones, investigate, and imprison without end (oops and I forgot kill if deemed a threat) might be I don't know...out of control?

To those who say, you should have been screaming then...lots of us did.  But, if today someone is just waking up and sees this is bad, don't you who already knew this was bad think, good, I'm glad you finally woke up now help me tell them to stop this instead of go back to sleep, we don't want you to notice because you didn't see it then and now, we're going to not see it instead?

For those who say, Bush did it first?  So what? It's clear it's been expanded. If it was wrong then, it is wrong now. If you knew it was wrong then, why aren't you furious now? That someone else did it first is a defense I don't take from my kids, why in heaven's name would I tolerate such a lame excuse from the federal government.

Whatever your political stripe, one thing is clear, this is not better.


Cathy Turney said...

Great summary, Sherry. When the government tells us they're listening, that's not a good thing (now).

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